A Bit of Comic Relief from the TPA


1:27 pm - March 17th 2009

by Unity    


      Share on Tumblr

I have to say that’s it nice to see that the Taxpayers’ Alliance are doing their bit for Comic Relief

…at least that’s what I assume they’re up to here as, otherwise, this is, by a long distance, the most piss-poor attempt at a smear that I’ve seen in ages.

A new report out today from the TPA reveals that large quantities of British aid goes to an even more sinister and damaging destination—Islamist hate education in the Palestinian territories. While the poverty of people in Palestine is well documented, the sad truth is that the £100m a year Britain gives to support the Palestinian Authority’s budget often ends up simply freeing up cash to be spent on propaganda dished out through the official media and the education system.

Let’s get one thing clear from the outset, I’ve got no particular brief or liking for the Palestinian Authority, nor am I particularly enamoured of the some of conduct of the Israeli government and the Israeli Defence Force. When it comes to politics of the Middle East I do my best to look at things objectively against the background knowledge that the whole situation out there is a near as damn it fucked up beyond all recognition and navigate the political minefield as best I can. But then, but for a fairly blatant bit of dog whistling in the general direction of Tory Likudniks (which is what you’ll inevitably get from people who hang out with the likes of Tim Mongomerie and Donal Blaney – a poor man’s Peter Hitchens if ever there was one – on the Neocon Tory fringes) this report has almost nothing to do with the Palestinian Authority or the politics of the region. It’s just the usual TPA whinging about the government spending public money on anything other than a nice fat tax cut for the people who bankroll the organisation.

Oops, I made a bit of mistake in that last paragraph for which I’ll immediately apologise.

I actually referred to the TPA’s latest pile of brainless screed as a ‘report’ when what I should have said was a ‘four page A4 leaflet consisting a bunch of unsubstantiated allegations and a complete lack of any supporting evidence’ – because that’s what the TPA have actually released here.

In fact, I can save you all the time and trouble of downloading the thing by usefully (and comprehensively) summarising its content as follows:

1. Both the UK government and the EU (boo, hiss) have provided money to the Palestinian Territories from their International Development budgets, some of which has actually gone to the Palestinian Authority.

2. Some people and organisations associated with the Palestinian Authority have publicly said some pretty nasty things about Israel. (No shit, Sherlock – seriously, what’s the TPA’s next line of research? Do bear’s really shit in the woods or its that just a fiction promoted by loony-left environ-mentalists in order to slander the heroic logging companies whose sterling efforts go into making our funders even richer than they already are).

THEREFORE

British taxpayers’s money (qv. money that should be given to our funders in tax cuts… if any of them  actually pay any tax in the UK) has been spent on promoting ‘Palestinian Hate Education’.

Has it? I actually haven’t got the foggiest idea whether it has…

…and neither has the Taxpayers’ Alliance, because their leaflet consists entirely of an assortment of smears by alleged association and absolutely fuck all by way of evidence to demonstrate that a single penny of the International Development money provided the Palestinian Territories has actually been spent on any of the activities they object to.

Basically, its not a report and its a load of bollocks from start from finish, which is why I’ve giving no more than even money on Mad Mel Phillips knocking out a full 1500 words of her patent brand overheated, billious, ranting within the next 24 hours, much to the utter bemusement of the readers of the Daily Mail who’ll have absolutely no idea whatsoever why the paper is wasting good column inches on Mel’s lunatic ravings about a bunch of Johnny Foreigners, who aren’t even Polish, when the space could be much more usefully and entertainingly employed either in pursuit of their favourite blood sport, kicking the living shit out of lefty-lesbian social workers (the only kind that Mail readers actually believe exist) or in bemoaning the moral decline  of the British nation and the overt sexualisation of young children next to a photo of Kerry Katona wandering round Iceland with her tits hanging out.

(Mmm… I haven’t had a good old rant in a while and, damn, does it feel good)

If this is what the Taxpayers Alliance call evidence then I look forward to their next report leaflet in which they’ll be castigating the government for wasting their funders’ totally deserved tax cuts public money on MPs salaries on the grounds that David Davies MP is a complete and utter twat.

Actually, that’s not such a bad idea when you come to think about – at least we’ve got conclusive evidence that Davies is a twat to go on, which is considerably more than can be said for the TPA.

And finally…

The suggestion, at the start of this post, the TPA’s leaflet is, in fact, the organisation’s main contribution to Comic Relief is, of course, a joke…

…although I have uncovered this exclusive new footage of a Comic Relief collector’s visit to the offices of the one of the TPA’s major (anonymous) funders:

    Share on Tumblr   submit to reddit  


About the author
'Unity' is a regular contributor to Liberal Conspiracy. He also blogs at Ministry of Truth.
· Other posts by


Story Filed Under: Blog

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.


Reader comments


Hah! Brilliant. I love Unity’s rants.

Why should any British Tax money be used for overseas aid?

I think thats against our human rights.

The fact that Palestinian Aid goes to fund terrorism is virtually impossible to deny – Unity where have the billions gone to? How come we regularly hear that its only Hamas who have given Palestinians houses and schools – and thats why they get so much support.

Please Unity, rant away but not away with the fairies……..

Lilliput. Learn what human rights are.

The fact that Palestinian Aid goes to fund terrorism is virtually impossible to deny

If that’s the case then feel free to do exactly what the TPA failed to do – produce the evidence to support your assertion.

As I though I’d made clear, I’m agnostic on the question of whether international development funding is being redirected. by the Palestinian Authority, into either the pockets of some of its members or towards propaganda activities which run contrary to the Authority’s claim that it supports a peaceful two-state solution.

All I want to see is some actual evidence and, to be frank, if the TPA had any then it wouldn’t have made anything like as piss poor a job of its so-called ‘report’ and we could all get on with the business of asking why the DfID hasn’t carried out an investigation into these allegations.

Without supporting evidence, the claim that there are undeniable facts here has the same validity as one finds when people claim to be speaking with authority, on any subject they like, on the strength of simply being a parent. It all amounts to the same thing, as Bill Bailey pointed out…

“Talking out of my arse…”

We could also wonder why it is that we are considered to stupid to make up our own minds on whether aid money should be sent to Palestinians (or to anyone else for that matter). Why is this a valid area for the state to get involved in?

Of course it isn’t, it’s just another way for corrupt politicians to grandstand in front of voters.

“Why should any British Tax money be used for overseas aid?

I think thats against our human rights.”

Just highlighting this for amusement’s sake, in case anyone missed it earlier.

I am sure tha the next or next but one TPA ‘report’ will condemn the hundreeds of millions the British governemnt spends on maintaining ‘colleges of criminality’; otherwise known as HM Prisons.

http://www.terrorfinance.org/the_terror_finance_blog/2009/03/feeding-the-palestinan-leech.html

and yes I agree that my use of human rights term in that way is very amusing – how funny of me to think that I have the human right to decide where my money goes……..even animals wouldn’t be so dumb…..

Diversity

I’ve always thought that we should bring back corporal punishment – on various grounds, but one of them being cost and another being that they are as you say, “colleges of criminality”. IMHO one of the reasons crime is such a problem is that we punish as a last resort, presumably for exactly these reasons.

If you punish as a first resort, what’s the last resort? Capital punishment?

2 – Why should any British Tax money be used for overseas aid?

Because there is a good ethical and indeed also self-interested case to prevent avoidable deaths in the developing world, and to try to have every child get an education. But mainly because we have a democratic election to elect MPs and a government, and this was a major issue for the party that won.

If you want to abolish overseas aid, its a free country, why not start a campaign and see how you get on. You could run candidates on that ticket too. Use the Jury Team primaries. If enough people agree with you about the importance of this, you should win through. And if they carry on agreeing with you, you can even run the country. But if they think you’re a selfish twat then carrying on trolling on the internet instead.

Tim F

I’m not sure I follow your logic there. If we are to have any sort of a deterrent effect, then we need to punish as a first resort. One point of the criminal justice system has to be to deter, doesn’t it?

If we take as our criteria the points raised above – cost and colleges of crime – then capital punishment probably fails – the cost of all those appeals is probably too high. What we need is an alternative to prison that is cheap but still acts as a deterrent. That’s why I think you can make a case for corporal punishment.

Sunder – I’m vertainly not the only one who thinks that way – there are even books published on the evils of foreign aid:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dead-Aid-working-another-Africa/dp/1846140064

http://burningourmoney.blogspot.com/search/label/dfid

Please can you take offyour rose tinted glasses and see where the money is actually going – rather then your phantasy.

If you want to abolish overseas aid, its a free country, why not start a campaign and see how you get on. You could run candidates on that ticket too. Use the Jury Team primaries. If enough people agree with you about the importance of this, you should win through. And if they carry on agreeing with you, you can even run the country. But if they think you’re a selfish twat then carrying on trolling on the internet instead.

Sunder there has never been a campaign for giving tax away to foreigners for the very good reason it would be laughed into non existence. Some people may be delighted to give money to Africa ..( or whatever the fad may be ) and will do so . You want the State to remove money from people who earn it for this purpose, on threat of imprisonment .The prospect of living with your ‘moral disapproval’ is also a terrifying weapon of course…
There are a number of issues , immigration , overseas aid , attitudes to crime , the EU and so on where there are large majorities against the political elite who impose their will via hierarchical Party politics which reinforces class privilege. In particular the working class support for the Labour Party is not exclusively but predominantly nationalists and socially conservative. It is nonetheless counted as votes ‘against’ those very causes by the Fabian element who have always sought to direct working-class politics towards internationalism and a variety of failed social experiments we are slowly unpicking .
I need hardly say that the argument that a thing is right because our system produces that result is too weak to bother with .The question is how the free up the system from this sort of exploitation. I suggest greater use of referenda, shorter fixed terms for Parliament and open Primaries in safe seats .This would greatly weaken the hold the “Liberal progressive” have on votes cast by people who fundamentally disagree with them. We might expect luxury International adventuring to wither on the vine .
We will see a debate on Constitutional reform after the next election and these are the sort of directions I expect to see it taking .International aid is relatively minor source of irritation but it is a symptom of a faulty system that requires attention.

“But mainly because we have a democratic election to elect MPs and a government, and this was a major issue for the party that won. ”

I wonder if all those who voted for that party agreed with them on that particular issue. Would be interesting to see a referendum result.

Liliput:

I thought you might have learned by now not to throw things up without checking the source material is claims to be based on:

Let’s give a couple of short examples taken from Rachel Ehrenfeld’s blog post:

“Fayyad himself stated many times that controlling Palestinian finances “is virtually impossible.”

Fayyad actually said that on taking over the finances of the PA after Fatah had taken control following after 14 months in which Hamas were running the show and, seemingly, looting the PA’s finances to suit its own agenda – all BEFORE the Annapolis declaration.

Ehrenfeld then goes to state that:

“Moreover, last month, despite Fatah-Hamas bloody disagreements, Fayyad diverted $21.5 million sent from Israel to Gaza to pay PA employees’ salaries, to rebuild the houses of Gaza residents that were destroyed during Operation Cast Lead.”

Now why would he do something like that? It doesn’t make sense…

…unless, of course, you go for the obvious answer which is that of trying to sway the population of Gaza back behind Fatah by rebuilding houses that the Israelis blew the shit out of while trying to crack down on Hamas.

It’s a very elementary piece of politics – Hamas got your house demolished and Fatah are rebuilding it, so who are you going to support.

I have to say that Ehrenfeld’s work is usually much better than that post, which amounts to little more than the same kind of conjecture that the TPA have put out and precious little actual evidence.

Unity,

Lets turn the question around ie

Can you show me (with proof) where all these billions of pounds of aid have gone?

If there is this information then there is nothing that I can argue with.

The fact that there isn’t leads me to believe that they are funding unsuitable things – so the burden of proof lies on you – not on me.

Sorry?

You appear to have that backwards.

I’m making no strong assertions as to where and how the money is being spent, merely pointing out that the TPA are making claims that are presently unsupported by evidence.

As such the burden of proof lies with those who make claims which they suggest amount to statements of fact.

As things stand there does appear to be substantial evidence that Hamas misappropriated funds intended to support the Palestinian Authority. when it was in control, but that was before the period covered by the TPA’s leaflet and its main allegations relate to the Fatah.

No Unity, the burden of proof is always on the people who spend the money – that’s why every company and charity has to have auditors.

And if they have that proof – I’m sure they can sue the TPA and get a nice big settlement

And we’re talking about foreign Aid funding the hate education of the next generation of suicide bombers – I son’t knowwhat you’re talking about here:

As things stand there does appear to be substantial evidence that Hamas misappropriated funds intended to support the Palestinian Authority. when it was in control, but that was before the period covered by the TPA’s leaflet and its main allegations relate to the Fatah.

“I wonder if all those who voted for that party agreed with them on that particular issue. Would be interesting to see a referendum result.”

Yawn…

You could make the same case for every govt that has ever been elected for the last 100 years.

22. Planeshift

This is how stupid your argument that “the burden of proof is always on the people who spend the money” is lilliput.

I make an allegation:

“The Taxpayers alliance donated funds to defend Jospeh Fritzl.”

The TPA reply:

“No we didn’t, you’ve offered no evidence to suggest we did. Produce it or shut up”

I then reply:

“The burden of proof is always on the people who spend the money”

How convincing have I been?

“Sunder – I’m vertainly not the only one who thinks that way – there are even books published on the evils of foreign aid:”

Yes, mainly by right wing nuts who think freetrade is the answer to everything. So not to be taken seriously.

“No Unity, the burden of proof is always on the people who spend the money – that’s why every company and charity has to have auditors.”

What , you mean like Enron, or Mr Madoff, or Mr Standford? Yea right, we can trust the auditors.

But if they think you’re a selfish twat then carrying on trolling on the internet instead.

smackdown!!

The press release states: Next time a politician says they want peace, harmony and understanding in the Middle East, ask them this: why the hell are we paying to teach kids that violence and hatred are good?

Good question. Also, why are we supporting an Israeli government that keeps building and sustaining illegal settlements on land that doesn’t belong to it?

“You could make the same case for every govt that has ever been elected for the last 100 years.”

I’m not saying you couldn’t. I’m just making the point that people who vote for a party don’t agree with everything on its manifesto.

The press release states: Next time a politician says they want peace, harmony and understanding in the Middle East, ask them this: why the hell are we paying to teach kids that violence and hatred are good?

Good question. Also, why are we supporting an Israeli government that keeps building and sustaining illegal settlements on land that doesn’t belong to it?

Sunny, as a proud citizen of the worlds largest colonial superpower – I find your comment hillarious!

All I wanted to say was that there are all these “Not in My Name ” signs when it comes to war – but when it comes to giving Aid/Charity – people don’t really care where its going and what is done with it. This is not a very complicated concept to grasp.

The argument for foreign aid paid for out of taxation is essentially the same as that for a welfare state funded through a progressive tax system – that those of us lucky enough to be relatively well off have a duty to provide a degree of assistance for those less fortunate. There is an element of self interest in that we all benefit from living in societies that do not have extremes of need and poverty and from the existence of “common goods” but there is also a moral argument based on our common humanity and I don’t see why this should end once you reach a national border.

Of course aid has not always produced the kind of long term results we would like, often for perfectly understandable reasons sometimes less so (and this is not always the fault of those on the receiving end). But it has also done a lot of good and although it is not a panacea in itself it is difficult to see a development route for many countries, particularly in Africa, that does not include considerable amounts of aid. Have a look at the UN Miilenium Development goals and consider if a) they are worthwhile goals and b) if so, how they can be met without properly co-ordinated foreign aid

Good question. Also, why are we supporting an Israeli government that keeps building and sustaining illegal settlements on land that doesn’t belong to it?

Hey, Sunny, what is worse – building an illegal settlement, an admittedly immoral thing to do…or blowing up innocent civilians and firing rockets at kindergartens with the stated intention of destroying the state upon which you are firing?

Just answer the question, without squirming.

DG,

Are you seriously trying to suggest that Hamas gets it’s weapons from aid that we give? Even the TPA report doesn’t go that far.

After having read the TPA report, it assumes that Palestinian textbooks are hate-filled, which in reality, they’re not. Well, not according to me anyway. Teaching Palestinian kids about Ghandi, non-violent resistance to an occupation, and about how the Oslo accords were a major step towards peace isn’t exactly what I call extreme.

Shafiq,

“Are you seriously trying to suggest that Hamas gets it’s weapons from aid that we give?”

How exactly did you get that from my statement? I didn’t even make mention of where they get their weapons from, though I think it would help if we didn’t give them money with which they can purchase weaponry.

And Shafiq, how many Palestinian Hamas authorised text books do you own? I’m intrigued to know how you can be so sure of this opinion, when it is widely and commonly accepted that Hamas try to radicalise children and turn them into suicide bombers. There have even been stories of 4 year old children, featured in our newspapers, telling of how they want to grow up and blow up Israelis ‘just like uncle did’.

DG,

Well you mentioned rockets and you mentioned giving money, and I put them two together (wrongly). The thing with the giving aid, is that it can’t be used to buy weapons and it never has been. I think it is fair that we give them aid to rebuild their houses seeing as they were destroyed partly by British-built F-16s.

And I don’t own any Palestinian Hamas authorised textbooks because such a thing does not exist. The PA designs the curriculum (and has done so since 1994) and the latest edition of the textbook came out before Hamas was elected into power.

Now let’s compare that to Israeli textbooks, which describe Arabs as ‘bastards, thirsty for Jewish blood’ and imply that the Palestinians are foreigners (which is obviously false).

And unlike you, I don’t see much difference between the illegal settlements and the Hamas charter. The settlements are built with the explicit aim of undermining the creation of a future Palestinian state and the vast majority of settlers are of the idea that all the Arabs in the Occupied territories should be forcibly removed or killed if necessary.


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy

    New post: A Bit of Comic Relief from the TPA http://tinyurl.com/d7xmxw





Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.